Blogging first thing in the morning…. We were too tired last night.
We knew we were going to be riding into the wind and rain yesterday. We also knew that we had an extra long ride because there were only two places to stop: one at 45 miles which wouldn’t cover enough distance to get us into Hofn by Saturday night (and we have a one-night hotel reservation in Hofn that night) and the other near mile 85. We worked efficiently to eat and break camp in the morning and headed out around 9 AM.
It rained on us most of the day and the wind slowed us significantly. It wasn’t until between 3 and 4 PM that we made the midpoint. We ate at a gas station (the only one for 120 miles) and set off for another long ride. The winds shifted and we had side wind and tail wind which helped us make it to our destination before 9. So grateful for the favorable wind.
We arrived completely gassed at the place we thought we could stay. However, the campsite didn’t look like it was there. There was no road sign for it, which is strange for Iceland. However, our bike maps said there was one .3 miles down a hill. We were not feeling up to riding another 5 hours to get to the next campsite, so we rode down to the guesthouse to inquire. As we rode up we saw one tent with a bike near it. We asked inside and they said we could stay. I think they don’t advertise because they don’t want tent campers, but we were so grateful they let us set up a tent. We get to use their restaurant’s bathrooms and set up on their backyard.
Here are a few comments and observations from yesterday and the previous days:
- This year our bike plus gear is over 200 pounds. Hills hurt. Our last two days have had just over 1000 feet of climbing each day. Hopefully we’ll be in shape for next week’s climbs.
- Yesterday evening with let than 9 miles to go we saw many cars pulled over. We were moving at a good pace but decided to stop and see what everyone was looking at. We were so glad we stopped. It was a glacier lagoon and it was stunning.
- The horses here are beautiful. The have long manes. Some of their manes cover their faces. Many want to run with us as we ride by. (Sheep seem curious about us.)
- We’ve been eating at gas stations, but they are few and far between. Yesterday our only opportunity was at mile 45. We are thankful for fries and salad.
- The water here is amazing. The stuff that comes out of a bathroom sink is like expensive bottled water.
- We see a few other bikers each day, but not as many as we thought we would see. It is always nice to see someone else experiencing Iceland in the same way.
- We’ve had a few days of rain and are so grateful for our waterproof gear. Although after riding for 10 hours in the rain I’m soaked on the inside. It is probably sweat, but it might as well be rain. Almost all of my clothes are wet and haven’t had the chance to dry, so this morning I might be putting on wet clothes for today’s ride.
- Not to complain, but so far Iceland
has been mediocre. Come for the water, not the chocolate.
- The traffic thus far had been rough. It’s like we are in a vehicular mosh pit of tourists. As we go east it is getting better. Each day we’ve been run off the road fewer times. Only twice yesterday. We are so grateful for drivers who slow down as they pass. We find that the closer we ride to the white line the more bold and dangerous drivers are when passing us – thinking there is room to pass without getting out of their lane.
- One way bridges are really common.
- We are sleeping great. Sleeping in a tent has been no problem. The only downside is all the extra gear you have to haul around.
Today we have a shorter ride and we are staying one night in a hotel (first for this trip). Hoping for a relaxing day.